The Antibacterial Effects of Myrcene on Staphylococcus aureus and Its Role in the Essential Oil of the Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) :
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To clarify the nature of the antibacterial activity of tea tree oil (TTO; an essential oil of Melaleuca alternifolia), we investigated the antibacterial effects of m yrcene on Staphylococcus aureus FDA209 and the effects of the combination of myrcene and terpinen-4-ol. The results were compared with that in the case of other components of TTO. Using S. aureus FDA209P as the test organism, we assessed antibacterial activity in terms of the growth inhibition and the leakage of K^+ ions from bacterial cells. Myrcene suppressed the growth of S. aureus, as did TTO, and the effect was dependent on damage to cell membranes. A mixture of myrcene and terpinen-4-ol had activity similar to that of TTO with respect to leakage of K^+ ions from S. aureus. Myrcene acts as an antibacterial agent against S. aureus and is an important contributor to the antibacterial activity of TTO.
- Natural medicines
Natural medicines 58(1), 10-14, 2004